Tag Archives: streusel

Spiced Upside-Down Apple Cake

Spiced Upside-Down Apple Cake

The very last issue of Gourmet sits in a stack along with the most recent issues of Saveur, Bon Appetit, and Food & Wine — all barely touched.  Holiday catalogs I’d rather not receive lay scattered in the mix as well reminding me that I should probably pay attention.  How can it be the end of November?  The month has flown by and with it my favorite season of the year, leaving only a few days to think about recipes I’d like to try this year for Thanksgiving.  Outside of making a simple list of traditional dishes and leaving it to sit on the kitchen counter, I’m still not prepared.

I’ve accepted that this just won’t be the year to try yet another way to mash and flavor potatoes with the likes of parsnips or roasted garlic, white truffle oil or black truffle shavings.  I won’t have to wonder why a stuffing recipe calls for freshly made cornbread that has to sit on the counter for a day before it can be cubed and tossed with other ingredients to make an herby stuffing.  And I’ve decided that deep-frying a ton of microscopically thin onion rings to flavor a new spin on the classic green bean casserole won’t be happening, either, even though it was quite a fabulous recipe.  No, we’re going to be relatively conservative this year which is why I was able to spend some time in the kitchen today trying a new recipe with some of my favorite flavors:  apples, pecans, and cinnamon with a hint of orange.

David Guas’ Spiced Upside-Down Apple Bundt Cake was perfect from the moment I saw it in Food & Wine’s “Last Bite.”  Even though I’ve never owned a bundt pan, it was the least of my worries because the recipe calls for buttermilk.  Whenever I buy buttermilk,  it gets pushed to the back of the fridge and is forgotten until long after the date stamped on it, then ends up down the drain.  Not this time!   I found it with a day to spare — not that I could tell given its characteristic pungent smell.

How does one tell whether buttermilk is sour when it always smells badly?  It’s a very good thing that it works so nicely as a cooking ingredient, don’t you think?

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I Heart this Apple Cream Streusel Pie

When I was growing up, I rarely hesitated if someone asked me what my favorite flavor was because it was simple.  Chocolate.  In fact, I loved chocolate so much, in my late teens I wouldn’t hesitate to eat a brownie topped by a scoop of chocolate ice cream and drizzled with fudge sauce.  If those little piece of chocolate shot were to be had, they would be perfect sprinkled over the top of it all.

And then everything changed.  I love that part about life.  I really do.  Can you imagine always doing the same thing day in and day out?  Wait.  I guess most of us can imagine that quite easily, right?  Maybe that’s why food is such an adventure.  I know.  Rocket science.

So back to the chocolate…It wasn’t because I had a bad experience.  And I know it wasn’t sensory overload — although I was in a position to qualify for that eating chocolate on chocolate with chocolate.  Somehow, another “flavor” began to creep into my thoughts when I had a sweet tooth.  Actually, it was a combination of flavors…the tartness of a great apple (definitely none of that mushy golden delicious stuff), the hint of cinnamon, rich brown sugar, the crunch of nuts, and, oh my…cream.

It didn’t matter if it was a pastry and ice cream, apple cobbler, apple crisp, or apple pie.  But somehow, there was just no contest.  I’m still a chocolate lover, but the affair has been over for a long, long time.

And what does one do with lovely apples when the menfolk in the house conveniently forget that one a day keeps the doctor away?  I make apple pie.  And this one combines all my favorite flavors into one warm and comforting pie.

Totally delicious and very, very easy to make.  It comes together very quickly, so make sure everything is ready to go.

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